On Saturday the 8th—a fateful day in Russia—the War Cabinet did not meet.
I came to the Winter Palace to a session of the Provisional Government in order to defend a bill on the death penalty behind the front line. Without a word, Kerensky held out a piece of paper covered in writing to me. I read it and could not believe my eyes. The gist of it was that the Commander-in-Chief is ordering the immediate transfer of complete military and civil authority to him. The signature of V Lvov was beneath this ultimatum. I advised Kerensky to come to an arrangement with Gen. KornilovCommander in Chief of the Petrograd command - from 18 March 1917.
General Kornilov is suggesting:
1) Declaring a state of emergency in Petrograd;
2) Transferring all power in its entirety, military and civil, to the Commander-in-Chief;
3) The resignation of all ministers, including the chairman, and handing over temporary control of the ministries to deputy ministers, until the Commander-in-Chief has formed his cabinet.
I immediately went to the Malakhitov Hall, where the Cabinet meeting was being held, and, after reporting on my meeting with Lvov, I read out his memo and the verbatim text of my conversation with Kornilov. After pleading for the suppression of the mutiny, I declared that I only considered it possible to fight the rebellion if the Provisional Government transferred all power into my hands. See more
After a short discussion, it was decided to transfer to the chairman total power in order to put an end to Commander-in-Chief General Kornilov’s anti-government offensive as soon as possible.
Around 11 o'clock in the evening, I appeared at the meeting of the Provisional Government with all the documents in my hands. At my suggestion, the following measures were unanimously approved: 1) by telegram, to invite General Kornilov to transfer the authority of Commander-in-Chief to General Klembovsky, commander of the Northern Front, and immediately to come to Petrograd; 2) give me special powers to prevent and suppress an open coup d'état at the root.
I finished reading Gippius. An incredibly disgusting soul, not a single vivid word, various fantasies driven into stupid rhymes. She doesn't have a jot of poetic soul.